Valentine’s Day Treats

Well, Valentine’s day is just around the corner, and what better way to celebrate than search around for some of the cutest heart-shaped gifts around?

This stunning Valentine’s dress from Vivien of Holloway is just sensational. It would make a lovely bridesmaids dress- maybe cutting it a bit fine for this year, but if you are planning a Valentine’s wedding in the future snap it up now before it’s gone forever!

At £89, it won’t break the bank so you could even buy it as a present for yourself: It is Valentine’s day after all. Love yourself!

As well as this girly pink shade, there is a retro red. The dress is also available in both colours as a swing dress variant if you prefer a bit of volume.

How about these spectacular Vivienne Westwood shoes from Asos? (I seem to have a Viv theme going on here, Viv’s Valentine’s: Ooh alliteration!)

The shine on these is guaranteed to make an impact and that little heart is just so cute!

They are also a lot cheaper than you may think at just £88! Perfectly combining the classic vintage style of slingback shoes with a contemporary neon punch, these lovelies will look fantastic whatever the occassion.

The ideal quirky touch to any outfit for that wild- at- heart bride!

Finally, if you’re looking for something a little more practical, look no further than Amazon. Not just the biggest online bookshop ever, it sells this adorable heart shaped frying pan.

This would make the ideal gift for newlyweds just setting up home together. You can guarantee they won’t have one already- unlike the toasters!

It’s a bargain at less than £9, or you could buy a heart-shaped cake tin and egg fryer alongside it for less than £18. The ideal present for domestic bliss.

Tribute Acts

We’ve all been to one of those weddings. Uncle Ian is dosed up on Stella, waving around on the dancefloor to the tune of Agadoo courtesy of DJ Disco Dave whilst the little cousins play hide and seek underneath the tables. If this isn’t really your ideal way to see in married life, a tribute band could be what you’re looking for.

I know, I know! The very word “tribute” can send shivers running down your spine, but they can be a lot of fun in the right environment.

For an older theme, try hiring a good old fashioned brass band. Most large towns have their very own band so they are relatively easy to get hold of and can add a great atmosphere to the celebrations.

For something a little more Golden Era, how about a classic Big Band? This can span a number of decades, from the 30s up to the 50s. State 51 Sound have a track list consisting of everyone from Benny Goodman to Frank Sinatra so you can mix and match for your perfect wedding soundtrack.

Looking for something a bit more modern? Try a tribute to those most famous of Scousers, The Beatles. The brilliantly named Cheatles have a fabulous reputation and would bring an upbeat mood to your big day.

Finally, we’ve approached the 70s. Maybe not music’s classiest era but, let’s face it, a whole lot of fun! Abba, Bee Gees, T Rex…  there are so many bands to choose from, no matter your personal taste. Or why not surprise everyone and go for the Village Boyz– your guests won’t be expecting it, that’s for sure!

Mamas and Papas Tribute Act Needed!

Hey guys,

I’m about to put up a post on tribute acts but before I do that, I need to ask a favour.

I’m a massive fan of the Mamas and the Papas and desperately want a tribute band to play at my wedding. I can find a couple USA-based ones, but none here in the UK.

If anybody knows of one, could you please drop me a line at thevintagewedding@googlemail.com

Thanks everyone 🙂

Published in: on 11/02/2010 at 4:28 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Vintage wedding patterns

Would you make your own wedding dress? If you can’t find the perfect vintage dress, then try giving it a go! There are a wealth of sewing classes all over the UK or you could rope in a talented friend to help out. The cost of a pattern plus materials can work out much cheaper than a ready made dress. Plus, it will be completely one of a kind and so very you!

I’ve found the best place for vintage patterns is the ol’ faithful Etsy.

Here is a selection of my favourite from the 1920s onwards. (NB: Sorry about the dodgy image placement, no matter how much I try to edit it, it makes no difference!).

You may have noticed, this is actually a girl’s pattern. However, it is so adorable I think it would make a stunning wedding dress for an informal summer do in the garden. Just be prepared to do some tweaking!

The listing is actually for a set of five different patterns, ranging from a vintage size 10 to 14. No measurements are listed, so be sure to get in touch with the seller first.

The price for these amazing pieces of history? £25! The downside? They’re only delivered to the States, so you will have to ask the seller nicely to deliver here or make an American friend to forward it to you.

Ok, so it’s not a wedding pattern. But picture it in a cream silk or satin and it would be perfect for a chic city wedding.

It is dated 1937/1938 and is a bargain at around £11.50! The measurements are listed as 30-26-33, so it will be ideal for a petite frame.

It’s being sold by Chigals Patterns here.

This elegant pattern dates from 1946 and is just outstanding. I really love the shaped collar and swooping train. Teamed with an apple blossom headpiece and veil like this bride would complete this sensational outfit.

It is listed with unusual measurements 34-28-37, so you may want to check these before buying. It’s priced at just over £32 with postage from Sew Unique Classique here.

Love Grace Kelly’s glamorous wedding dress? This circa-1951 pattern is perfect for you. The vintage glamour shines through and is guaranteed to make you feel like a princess.

It is sized 32-26.5-35 and will set you back around £31 with postage.

If you think this is the dress for you, take a peek here at Bluette Court’s page.

 This pattern is the epitome of the 60s. Gorgeous for a wedding dress or adapt it to make a wonderful bridesmaids dress. The lace effect looks stunning.

Size 34-26-36 and priced at just over £12 including postage, this could make an absolutely stunning wedding gown.

Available from seller midvale cottage here.

Look what I found! A British pattern! It’s undated but looks to me to be from the early 70s. Just look at that cute mini dress! I love long sleeves with short skirts. Perfect for a young bride wanting a chic, stylish look.

The measurements are 32.5-25-34.5 and is an incredible £5.50! What a great bargain!

You can buy it from The Brighton Emporium here, and I’m off to see what else they’re selling!

Making a dress yourself ensures it is absolutely perfect. Not only is it entirely to your taste, but it fits perfectly. A great way to personalise your day and really add something special to your celebrations. Have fun!

Stephen Fry’s Waistcoat

In addition to the Heartbeat dresses I just posted, take a look at this.

A waistcoat worn by the ever fabulous Stephen Fry in the TV drama “Wilde”- unsurprisingly based around the life of Oscar Wilde himself.

It would make a great gift for your groom and add a fascinating touch, and conversation piece, to a Victorian themed wedding.

The thing I love most? It’s labelled with the words “Mr Stephan Fry 1996”. I love the mispelling- there’s something very charming about it.

How wonderful is this? At £250, it would make a wonderful wedding present. In fact, best grab it fast before I save enough money to buy it for mr Mr Fry-loving fiance!

Published in: on 09/02/2010 at 6:36 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Heartbeat Wedding Dresses

Hello lovelies,

I’ve been browsing around and have discovered a fabulous website that sells off costumes and props from film and tv shows: As Worn In.

Do be aware that most of the productions listed don’t have any items for sale, so it can be disappointing if you see your favourite film. It is also quite expensive- £300 for a cap from Ghandi!

However, amongst this there are some beauties. The one above is my favourite: a dress worn in 1960s-set Heartbeat for the wedding between Jo and Nick. It consists of not only the white mini dress but also the dramatic headpiece for £1000.

If you’d rather go for something full length, this dress is cheaper at just £600. I’ve had a root around but can’t find any information on which character wore it, I’m afraid.

The downside of the website is that there is no information on measurements, so you’ll have to drop them a line for some more information.

Have a look around. I’m off to see what other beauties I can find.

Published in: on 09/02/2010 at 6:25 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Sunday Steals: 1960s Cocktail Dress

Another Etsy jobby today. Sorry I’m not more original, but I promise I’ll start looking now for next Sunday’s bargain!

This cute dress is listed as 1950s. It looks too short to be 50s for me, so I would hazard that it is actually 1960s. I may be wrong though!

Regardless, this is a cutie of a dress. Made of gorgeous cream satin, adorned with little flowers this makes the perfect outfit for a mellow spring wedding.

With a tailored fit and emphasised waist, this will look great on a curvy figure. Which is wonderful news because the dress has measurements of 36-28-40.

Of course, it’s in our Sunday Steals which means is must be a bargain, right? Oh yes! At $69 including postage from the States, it works out at a fantastic £44. Ooh lovely!

From seller Jessamity, it is available here.

Published in: on 08/02/2010 at 12:04 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Angels Retro Sale: Review

Eek! First off, I am so sorry that I haven’t updated in a few days. It’s been a crazy whirlwind of events, but I have got some fantastic research done for you lovely lovers of vintage.

Yesterday morning sparked the start of the Angels Retro Sale in Wembly. For those who don’t know, Angels are suppliers of costumes for TV shows and films, many of the BBC. Every so often (about twice a year from what I can gather), they have a sale in which they throw open the doors of their London warehouse for us to rummage around those costumes no longer needed.

I toddled along yesterday morning to grab some goodies and thought I would let you all know how it went, and maybe help you with some tips for the next one.

First things first, get there early. I mean EARLY. Think about how early is too early, and get there another two hours earlier than that. I arrived at 8:57, to be exact, (having left the house at 6:15!!), a mere 27 minutes after the doors had opened, and faced an enormous queue on my arrival. It took exactly an hour to get to the doors, which wasn’t too bad by my expectations, but the girls standing behind me were not impressed.

On a related note, if it is a cold day, wrap up warm. Don’t be foolish and go for the cute outfit that might be a little chilly. My toes were numb after 20 minutes of waiting. Also, rummaging around in the bottom of a cardboard box is so much more elegant if you are wearing trousers.

The sale is based on bags, rather than individually priced items. You buy either a £20 medium bag or a £50 large bag and fill it up as much as you can (within reason). Want a really sneaky tip? Don’t let on now, will you? 2 medium bags have a larger volume than 1 large bag AND are £10 cheaper! OR, go for a third medium bag and get much more space for just an extra tenner!

Apeaking of the bags, it’s a lot easier to squeeze things in than you think. If you go for a large item, squash loads of little ones in too. Even if there is nothing small you want, head over to the hats and squeeze in as many side caps as you can. They are very small, very squishy and very sellable! I wish I’d bought more than the two for myself!

Ok, so you all want to know what the stock is like. Here’s the bad news. The website states “All our stock is good quality”. It’s not. By that, I don’t mean there are small holes or some stains. Those are fine and easily repaired. This is worse than that: The shirts are torn to shreds, the shoes are crumbling or terribly water damaged and the hats are crushed. Having said that, there are a few salvageable pieces in there if you look closely.

The womenswear? Appalling. I was only in there 90 minutes after doors opened, not too bad by all accounts, yet there was nothing to speak of except some brown jumpers, stained nightdresses and 80s tat. Unless you get in as soon as the doors open you are unlikely to find anything worth wearing.

The menswear? Incredible! The vast proportionate difference between male and female attendees meant the menswear section was filled to burst with amazing 1960s suits, 1950s jackets and brogue shoes. Ladies, be open minded and take a look at those men’s jackets. I tried a few on, inclusing a gorgeous seersucker striped blazer, yet they were all too small or too large. Sigh.

The accessories? Oh my, the accessories! They make the whole thing worthwhile. We left with 7 hats and 4 pairs of shoes! There are boxes upon boxes of hats. Some are a little squished but can be rumpled into shape. A lot are damaged beyond repair but many are in good condition, especially the military and air hostess hats. As for the shoes, be prepared to root for women’s shoes. Every pair I tried on seemed to be a size 6. Perfect for me, but maybe not if you have small/large feet. They are nearly all damaged beyond repair but there are some beauties so look carefully. Keep an open mind- I grabbed some beautiful purple satin mary janes. With terrible water stains. I’m still not sure what I’m going to do with them, but I’m working on it.

Finally, have fun! Some people took it far too seriously but it’s just like being in a massive fancy dress shop. Try on some silly hats, swan about in daft costumes and have a good time. Then go home and sleep because it’s 1pm and you’ve been awake since 4…

Published in: on 07/02/2010 at 11:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Your Outfit: Victorian

The Victorian wedding instantly conjures up images of romance, class and elegance. If this is everything you want for your wedding day, the Victorian outfit is perfect for you. The corsetted bodices emphasise your assets whilst pulling in any wobbly bits whereas the elegantly draped skirts create curves to complete a gorgeous hourglass silhouette.

This stunning dress is a genuine 1880s wedding gown. Despite being 130 years old, it is still in a wearable condition- if you could bear to wear it, that is! Available from the amazing Bustle Dress, it is priced at $1625 (just over £1000), although remember to factor in shipping costs and custom tax.

If you don’t trust yourself in an ancient dress around the gravy dinner, try an Ian Stuart dress. The master of Victorian inspired elegance, Ian Stuart’s dramatic dresses look amazing on any bride.

“Nocturne”, shown here, has a subtle late Victorian inspiration. Although be prepared to cough up more than the real thing, this dress is recommended at £2300!

Of course it will be made to your measurements so you can guarantee it will fit. This is the perfect choice for those curvier brides. Despite the overwhelming Victorian appeal of curvaceous figures, very few women actually achieved them. Why do we always want what we can’t have…?

To finish off your outfit, try a pair of laced up boots. These Henry Kaye beauties are available in white or ivory satin so you can choose the shade that best compliments your dress.

At £100, they won’t cost the earth and are ideal for completing that Victoriana feel to your outfit whilst adding a quirky touch.

Finally, who can tell what the British weather will bring? Rain or shine, a delicate parasol is the perfect solution, whatever the forecast. This parasol, £29.99 from Perdita’s Wedding Shoes, is a great choice as it is waterproof- meaning it not only looks great but is practical whatever the day brings.

Whatever you choose to wear, you will be able to look back on your wedding photos in years to come and summon up all those wonderful romantic connotations that the Victorian era brings.

Published in: on 02/02/2010 at 5:36 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Rachel Simpson Shoe Sale!

Hurry, hurry! The amazingly talented Rachel Simpson has a sale on her website to clear the old styles and make way for some brand new designs. Whilst I’m very sad to be losing some of the shoes, I’m very excited to see what lovely designs will be rolling out.

Here are just some of my favourite bargains:

These gorgeous Ophelia boots are perfect for a Victorian theme. In ivory with lovely dainty satin ribbon and a cute 3 inch heel, these are ideal for a wedding in these colder months.

With 25% off, they are now just £120.

These Perla shoes are reminiscent of the mid century. The cheeky straps and peeptoe add a fun twist to these otherwise classic shoes.

The ivory leather is a more durable alternative which makes them perfect for dancing the night away in.

With a whopping 40% off, these beauties are almost cheaper than the high street at just £81.00

Don’t forget your bridesmaids! A classic look that works for any era, these satin stunners are available in lilac (as shown here) or emerald with the 30% discount making them less than £94.

If, like me, you’re heartbroken to say goodbye to these stunners, fear not- they’re still available in the bridal ivory and delicate celeste shades.

Check out the website at www.rachelsimpsonshoes.co.uk to see the full range, including all clearance shoes.

Stock is limited so get in there quick- when they’re gone, they’re gone!

Published in: on 01/02/2010 at 11:18 am  Leave a Comment  
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